Awasu Personal Edition v2.0.4 (beta)

UPDATE: This beta has expired. Please check the releases page for information about the latest releases.

This is a beta release. Some features may not be complete and the software may be unstable. Install at your own risk! You may need to do some basic computer maintenance tasks to get this release to run.

 

Installation

You must already be running 2.0.3. As always, exit Awasu and back up your installation first!

  • Unpack the following zip on top of your existing files:

        Awasu-PersonalEdition-v2.0.4.zip

    • If you have purchased the Advanced Edition, you can get it here.
    • If you are running Windows 98/Me, please download this release from here instead.

  • Delete archive.db in your user's home directory (e.g. C:\Program Files\Awasu\Users\YOUR-NAME). You will lose your archived items but all your channels and settings will remain. Doing this is not essential if you are running alpha3 but still recommended.

  • If you have made changes to any of the template files, please read this page for more information.

 

Enclosures

The big addition in this release is support for enclosures. It has been done in a very generic way and allows files to be downloaded for Atom feeds as well as RSS feeds.

Feed items can now have related links, that is, URL's (or files) that have been associated with the item. For RSS, these are enclosures (via the <enclosure> tag) but Atom feeds can also have related links (via the <link> tag). Awasu can now be configured to automatically download these related files (typically MP3's or video files) when they are found.

The first thing to look at is the global settings in the Program Options.

There is a master switch that enables or disables all automatic downloading of related files. You can control where the files get saved (default is in the Downloads sub-directory of your user's home directory), what file types can be downloaded and when. You can also control how long you want to keep the files e.g. you might want to automatically delete them after 15 days.

Most of these settings can also be configured on a per-channel basis.

NOTE: This feature is available in the Advanced Edition only.

Finally, the channel summary pages look a little different if feed items have any related links. If the related files have already been auto-downloaded, they will be shown with a small icon and you can click on the link to play them directly from your hard disk. If a feed item has related links that have not yet been downloaded, you will see them with just a normal link to the file on the Internet.

If you have written your own custom templates, you will need to update them for this new feature.

 

Major new features

  • This release contains many database optimizations. You should find the UI a lot more responsive, especially if lots of channels are updating in the background. Marking items as read/unread also should be quicker, again especially if channels are updating in the background.

  • The search engine has also received a lot of attention and the problems it was having before have now been fixed. In particular, query parsing should work reliably now and queries that used to crash Awasu should be processed correctly. The search engine still occasionally has difficulty but it should no longer bring Awasu down.

    This also means it is now safe to create search agents (Awasu sometimes had difficulty if a search agent was running a query that caused it to crash since one of the first things that happens after startup is that the search agents are run which would cause Awasu to fall over before you had a chance to delete the offending search agent).

  • Added a new toolbar to quickly do searches.

  • Added a Format drop-menu to channel window navbars to quickly change the presentation settings of the channel window.

  • Added a switch to exclude channels from the search index. This is useful for channels that provide item descriptions of dubious value. For example, including this feed in the search index will skew search results if you're looking for something that includes "BBC" or "Reuters".

  • Added a switch to turn on and off the "advanced syntax" for search queries. Turning advanced syntax off disables all of the special characters that are normally recognized. For example, "foo?" will no longer match "foot", it will only match exactly "foo?".

  • Added a new menu item (File|Work offline) to switch Internet Explorer's "work offline" mode. While this mode is usually controlled via IE, it is in fact a system-wide setting and therefore affects Awasu e.g. channel updates will fail if working offline.

 

Other changes

  • Users are no longer given their own set of template files. If you have made changes to any of the template files, please read this page for more information.

  • If a channel has expired, you now have the option to keep it for a little longer (in addition to keeping it permanently or deleting it).

  • Show the correct icon in My Channels if a channel has 20 or more unread items (instead of appearing to be stuck at 19).

  • Fixed a problem with reports generating incorrect results and broken image links if they were run more than once.

  • Changed the way Awasu checks if your computer is connected to the Internet. Unfortunately, the process is still not 100% reliable (mostly if you connect via a LAN) but there has been a lot of flexibility built in so let us know if you're having problems and I'll give you some things to try.

  • Relative links in RSS <link> tags are now translated into absolute URL's.

  • Lots of other minor bug fixes and other tweaks.